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Audience, Purpose, & Context. Who? Why? What?. Analyzing the Audience . Who will be reading, listening to, or using this material? What particular characteristics do they have? What are their backgrounds and attitudes towards the subject?. Typical Business Audiences. Subordinates

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Presentation Transcript
analyzing the audience
Analyzing the Audience
  • Who will be reading, listening to, or using this material?
  • What particular characteristics do they have?
  • What are their backgrounds and attitudes towards the subject?
typical business audiences
Typical Business Audiences
  • Subordinates
  • Co-workers / peers
  • Supervisors
  • Investors
  • The Public
general audience
“General” Audience

“The Public” isn’t a general audience.

The “general” audience does not exist.

When writing for the public, you are actually writing to interested members of the public. Or those you hope will become interested.

mixed audiences
Mixed Audiences

Many business documents have a mixed audience

  • Memos to subordinates may be read by superiors in a performance review
  • A document written for investors may be posted on the corporate web site
  • An internal email may be subpoenaed
analyzing the purpose
Analyzing the Purpose
  • Why is this communication important?
  • Why is it needed?
  • What will users do with this information?
typical business purposes
Typical Business Purposes
  • Informational
  • Persuasive
  • Analytical
mixed purpose
Mixed Purpose

Purpose, like audience, is often mixed:

  • An advertisement is often at least partly informational
  • An analytical report must persuade the reader that the analysis is valid
analyzing the context
Analyzing the Context
  • What are the organizational settings in which the document will be used?
  • Are there legal issues to consider?
  • How much time do the users have to perform a task?
  • Are the readers of this document members of a larger professional community?
  • Are the readers from one culture only or cross-cultural?
using audience analysis
Using Audience Analysis

The results of your audience analysis will affect

  • Word choice
  • Examples
  • Document format
  • Document length
  • Document genre
  • Included or excluded information
relevance
Relevance

Relevant information is useful to the audience.

  • What do they already know?
  • What do they need to know?
  • Why are they reading this document?